RE: [JMC_Blue_Dwarf] Lester gets shot LONG Action post.
Who: Justin, Callum and Lester Where: Blue Dwarf 388 When: Just after Justin killed Kryten <snip> "I think I'm getting the hang of this now." Justin said, and swung the gun around. It fired without him even having to press anything and hit....</snip>
Lester frowned as for the umpteenth time a roar of bazookoid fire filled his immediate vicinity. He looked at Callum in horror, but no, the engineer was fine, no blood or serious burns. He turned his head slowly to the security officer Chris Harris. He seemed fine too, almost angry. Everyone seemed quiet and sort of stunned.
Then Lester's legs gave out. He hit the deck hard on his chin and thought faintly that it hurt a lot. Behind him there was a skittering of alien claws.
"Oh no," he thought, "I should be running away. Why aren't I running away? Maybe I should crawl?" The alien claws were getting closer, despite the barrage of bazookoid fire and one of them stepped on, then through Lester.
"Ah," he thought, "I've been stabbed through the lung. Now I can't breathe... Those are Justin's feet. I recognise the shoes. I wonder where Justin's feet are going."
CRITICAL SYSTEM FAILURE flashed across his dimming vision. SYNAPTIC MEMORY IMPLANTS FAILING.
"Oh look, I'm being born," he observed his life flashing past him, "there's primary school, that teacher, then high-school. Hey, there's my first girlfriend."
"First what?" shouted an indignant part of his dying brain.
"Now there's University, developing Better Than Life, that was fun. Ah yes, stealing Chad Winterton's girl on the night of Summer dance."
"STEALING WHO'S WHAT?!" Screamed nearly-dead Lester.
"Ah, yes the Aston Martin, my pride and joy," he saw the car, felt the interior leather, the thrill as the engine roared him down the motorway.
"I CAN'T BLOODY DRIVE!"
"Then the police, the furore over BTL, the chase down in the same car, turning it over on the embankment, the £$50 notes flying out of the ripped open boot. The rescue, the ambulance, the surgery. The job. Blank."
"Wait," said other-Lester, still gurgling his last breath. "What job? Why the blank? I was enjoying that!"
Lester forced his eyes open. Then he reached out his arm, slowly, like a newborn baby reaching for his mother, his fingers closed lightly around SNIDE who was huddled, shivering, beside his head. He stuck SNIDE firmly onto his cerebral implant and concentrated.
SNIDE bounced backwards, took a few steps sideways, then bounced backwards again in shock.
"Pleeeassssee," hissed Lester through the blood in his mouth.
SNIDE nodded then bounded upwards, down his back and to the serious injury that had blown a gaping hole out his back. There was a tiny point where the blast had nicked his vertebrae. SNIDE popped open a hatch on his tiny head, selected a wire that dealt with his ability to apologise (and was therefore never used) and yanked it out. Then he carefully applied to to the minute gap in Lester's spinal column. That done, SNIDE then hotwired part of his motor-functions and began to cauterise arteries and blood vessels with the tips of red-hot legs.
Lester worked as well. He identified the areas of his brain that were causing pain and shut them down. Then he attempted to access the memories again. Around the area that was blank, there were definite warnings, strong signals to turn back, but leading up to it, like a shining yellow brick road was the real life before that. he hadn't been so gawky and lanky that he couldn't play sports, he'd been captain of the basketball team! All that stuttering, all that crippling fear? Where did that come from? Ah, he'd found it: GEEK V2.1 meta-personality. Based on two-hundred years of analysed IT Support staff. (C) Microsoft, adapted by JMC. He tried deleting it.
ACCESS DENIED. YOU DO NOT HAVE ADMINISTRATIVE ACCESS AT THIS LEVEL.
SNIDE stepped back and admired the ugly gashes that had been created in Lester's body. He had worked fast and was finding this new turn of events difficult to keep up with. This Lester was the same, but different, the same body, different person? Maybe being shot did that to you? From the brief, forced contact they'd shared, one word had stood out about this new Lester: cool.
Lester dragged himself up to a sitting position and was distantly aware of the slight sagging sensation in his right-side where Justin had shot him. Why was Justin shooting him? Hmm, something to think about later. The kid was a prick, but not a killer. Something was going on. All around Lester were the remnants of the hordes of Hymenoptera (Classification: Threat level A. What?). He imagined them being bitterly disappointed at the lack of limbs to tear off the crew of Blue Dwarf 388 and managed a chuckle. Then he grabbed a severed Hymenoptera limb and dragged himself upright.
The survivors of the Hymenoptera attack were long gone. Harris had said something about grabbing all the Jay Chryslers and leaving, so he presumed they'd achieved their goal. Leaning on the insectoid claw like a cane he stalked angrily along the corridor, vaguely aware of SNIDE bouncing along behind him. There's no way this body would last long, he needed to do something about it. Then he needed to contact Chris Zodar.
"Who?" Lester stopped, leaning heavily on his makeshift cane and scowled at himself. "Who the smeg is Chris Zodar and why do I need to contact him?"
SNIDE shrugged, wondering what new-Lester was on about.
"Oh for smeg's sake," he growled and limped further along the corridor. This body was really getting useless now, no doubt about it. He stopped as his spine cracked a little and the bones ground together. "SNIDE, get me my tools." He lurched up to the waste-disposal unit into which Justin had fed Kryten. He grabbed a leg and heaved, cracking more spinal column as he did. That was when two Skutters happened along.
"Of course," Lester thought as he tried to bend down and settled for collapsing in front of them, "no limbs, just bodies with heads, they wouldn't be any different in this Universe." He reached out to the first one which inspected him curiously.
"Time for an upgrade," he said gently and twisted the Skutter's head off.
Two hours later Lester lay underneath the careful arms of the two skutters as they performed open-surgery on him. Soon he would need proper medical attention, but for now, he needed to simply be able to walk. Connected to Lester's temple by filaments of glass fibre, the skutters made careful incisions and grafted mechanical replacements and supports into his wound. Around him lay the salvaged bits of Kryten's lower half and SNIDE was skittering amongst them, making nervous chirping noises.
Lester risked a look at his body's pain registry. A tall glowing red bar indicated that nearly every nerve in his body was on the verge of shutting down. Only his cerebral implant stopped him feeling the injuries he had sustained and prevented him going into shock and dying.
The Skutters closed the last casing on Lester's injury and he tore himself loose of the connecting cables and managed to stand upright. He was shaky but at least he'd stopped the grisly grinding noise in his belly every time he moved. His chest had been patched too, but he was working with only one lung now. It amazed him that essentially the human body was a sort of squishy machine that could be patched up and repaired with the most basic of tools. However a temperature rise now indicated that he had a fever and would need some serious work soon.
He reached the docking bay and was not completely surprised to find it a ruined, smashed wreck. Bits of Blue Midgets and Starbugs littered the deck. Lester climbed down the ramp and found a new EVA suit to replace his which was full of holes and blood. Putting it on was a nightmare, with his new body parts whining and complaining. The reminded him, he'd need to sort out some kind of replacement for his kidney and liver, but that could wait. Once clamped into a spacesuit and helmet he rummaged through the debris until he found one, half-functioning space-bike.
"First Chris Zodar," he told SNIDE, "then Justin and he'd better have a damn good explanation."
Lester kicked the space-bike into spluttering life and lurched out of the cargo-bay towards Blue Dwarf Prime.
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